65% of landlords have suffered financially during the pandemic and four out of 10 believe their investments will be impacted by a recession (46%) and increased unemployment (41%) over the next two years.
The research, conducted for The Mortgage Lender by OnePoll among a panel of landlords, found that of those investors who have already suffered financially 28% reported rent arrears and 18% had tenants who left their rented home.
31% of landlords fear an increase in taxation will impact on their portfolios over the next two years while 21% believe population movement from cities to areas that have outside space and space to work from home could adversely affect their inner city properties.
Landlords also predict a fall in student numbers from home (14%) and abroad (15%) affecting buy to let properties in student areas that have historically offered superior returns in comparison to more expensive properties in the south of England.
Steve Griffiths, The Mortgage Lender’s sales director, said: “Landlords are facing an uncertain future with many moving parts.
“And there is some evidence that the pandemic could change the structure of the buy-to-let market in a more fundamental way than any of us could have anticipated at the beginning of this year.
“With the City of London currently deserted and many larger employers considering work from home policies as a more permanent solution there could well be a longer-term change in the types of properties tenants will find attractive.
“Despite the uncertainty landlords understand that property investment is a long term strategy – indeed half of the ones we surveyed said the pandemic hadn’t changed their investment plans at all and that is borne out by the number of applications we have seen for our buy-to-let products over the last four months.
“Through our funding line with Shawbrook Bank we’ve been able to maintain our buy-to-let product range throughout the pandemic and provide the funding options brokers and landlords are looking for.”